Town to Pay $24K In Landscaping to Hide Island’s “Ugliest Building”

The “ugliest building on Nantucket” won’t be moving anytime soon, and the Select Board has voted to pay a landscaping company to try to hide it from view at one of the busiest intersections on the island.

The town will spend $24,525 to install landscaping in an effort to shield the trailer located at the Sparks Avenue roundabout, next to the old fire station. The vote was 4-1, with Matt Fee the only dissenting vote.

“I just feel that the more money we spend, the longer that thing is going to sit there,” Fee said. “It’s the ugliest building on the island. I’d like to find a way to get rid of it and turn it into housing.”

Previously used as a school classroom, the trailer was moved to its current location before the pandemic hit to provide the town with additional meeting space, a need that became moot due to COVID-19. The town has already spent more than $225,000 to move the trailer unit and install it on the property.

“We are painfully aware of the unsightly [to put it kindly] modular trailer,” Town Manager Libby Gibson wrote in a recent communication.

Ray Pohl, the chair of the town’s Historic District Commission, said in March that the commission was pressured by the town to approve the move of the trailer to its current location, and was concerned that it is going to be there longer than it should.

The town hopes to complete a facilities plan and consolidate town offices at 2 Fairgrounds Road, allowing the unit to eventually be removed, Gibson said. 


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